Margo Smith

A Woman

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    5
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"Still a Woman," a country song that weirdly borrows the bass riff from Lou Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side," gave Margo Smith a Top Ten hit in 1979. Smith's version of "If I Give My Heart to You," a hit for Doris Day in the '50s, also made the Top Ten, and both songs are included on Smith's album A Woman. Smith sounds a little like Cristy Lane and favors ballads; she also likes to double her vocals on the choruses. An interesting aspect of the instrumentation is that two basses are used, one of which is Tommy Allsup's trebly "tic tac" electric bass -- a convention dating from the early '60s that was rarely used circa 1980. Smith wrote many of her hits and penned four of the tracks on the album, one of which ("You're the Song") is a recitation -- another interesting twist. The Classics Four's hit "Traces" is an unusual song for a country singer to cover, but Smith not only pulls it off, but makes it sound like it was meant to be a country-pop ballad. A Woman is slick but not sterile, has a cast of well-known players, and displays a mildly adventurous spirit.